Whether you’re traveling for work, or for play, here are some ways to make any hotel stay a safer one.
Bigger isn’t always better. Consider a boutique hotel with fewer than one hundred rooms. It makes it easier for the staff to pay personal attention to each guest, and even more important, recognize anyone who “doesn’t” belong there.
Keep track of yourself! As soon as you arrive, take a business card from the front desk, or a piece of stationery from your room and tuck it into your purse or wallet. It will come in handy when you need to give the address to a taxi diver, or type it into your smart phone GPS.
Another simple safety trick: once you have your key, separate it from the envelope listing the room number. That way, if someone gets their hands on it, they won’t have instant access to your room. If you’re worried you’ll forget the number, e-mail it to yourself.
This next tip is especially important for women traveling solo: when it comes to room service, “don’t put it in writing!” Many hotels have room service forms that hang from the doorknob. They usually ask how many guests will be served. Don’t ever hang a form from your door with an order for “one.” Either list multiple guests, or better yet, call in your order.
Out for the night? Travel light! Keep your purse small ladies. And guys, cut the excess baggage. When you’re miles away from home, there’s no need to have all the keys you normally carry or your garage door opener. You probably won’t need your checkbook or your passport either, if you have your drivers license. If you accidentally brought extra items along, store them in the hotel safe when you go out.
One last safety tip, slice it for safety – I’m talking about your plastic room keys. The magnetic strip can hold valuable personal information, so do not leave them in the room or toss them in the trash. Either return them to the front desk, or if you find them later, cut them up so that your identity is protected. And remember, common sense is the most important item you can pack for any trip!